When we stepped on/onto the sandy beach, a gentle breeze blew on/onto our faces.

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Elaine Koh

Senior Member
Singapore English
When we stepped on/onto the sandy beach, a gentle breeze blew on/onto our faces.

Which preposition should I use for both pairs in bold?

Many thanks in advance.
 
  • xxxphillixxx

    Member
    English
    My opinion would be "on" for both. If you wanted to use "onto", I think you could only do so in the first preposition because it's a place, rather then a personal feel, if you understand. I don't hear "onto" alot anymore, perhaps because "on" is so much easier. But I find it more proper to use "onto" when speaking of a place, and of literal text. For example:

    He stepped up onto the platform.
     

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    Numerous ln/onto usage questions have appeared here and one can find multiple prevous threads by checking onto in the WRD accessible at the top of this page.
     

    kaynance

    Member
    Canadian English
    I disagree with xxxphillixxx.

    I think that you would use onto in the first case, as in: "When we stepped onto the sandy beach, a gentle breeze blew on our faces."

    Beach is similar to platform.

    My understanding is that you use "stepped on" if you stepped on something by accident.
    For example: "Ouch! You stepped on my foot!"
    When you are stepping onto something on purpose (like a beach, platform, scale) you would use onto as your preposition.
     

    xxxphillixxx

    Member
    English
    I think you mean you agree with me, kaynance. That was the argument I made. If you are reffering to my sample sentence, I said "stepped up" not "stepped on".

    Those two sentences are completley different.
    I do agree you would use "onto" such as to step on to a platform
     

    kaynance

    Member
    Canadian English
    Sorry, I wasn't very clear on what I was disagreeing with.

    My opinion would be "on" for both.
    I don't think that you would use "on" for both. I think that it would be "onto" and then "on"

    I mentioned your platform example because it shows that the first case should be "onto" as platform and beach are similar circumstances.

    I hope that makes more sense.
     
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